let the cat out of the bag

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

(Mid-1700s) The inverse of the idiom pig in a poke. If a dishonest merchant tries to sell a cat as a pig and the cat comes out or is taken out of the bag, the merchant's secret is disclosed.[1][2]

Phrase[edit]

to let the cat out of the bag

  1. (idiomatic) To disclose a secret; to let a secret be known, often inadvertently.
    It was going to be a surprise party until someone let the cat out of the bag.

Synonyms[edit]

Translations[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms
  2. ^ [1]

See also[edit]